Well firstly congratulations on your engagement.
Are you ready to start to live, sleep and dream wedding bells? I hope so!
So lets just say here, you need to be prepared! Most couples spend between 200-300 hours planning their wedding day! Seems a lot of hour’s right?
It can be both daunting and maybe sometimes stressful, it certainly has been for those during the pandemic, but as a rule it is the most enjoyable experience and a very exciting time too.
From getting engaged to the day you say I do, the roller coaster of emotions can be overwhelming, even if your wedding day is over a year away things will trip you up.
So here’s some things to give you a heads up with your planning. It’s a lot of information, but can you afford to turn down good free expert advice? More importantly, you need to know that you are not alone!
You and your partner are going to disagree
Don’t be shocked when I say, you may not always be on the same page as each
other on every element, gasp!! One of you may like the vintage theme, whilst the other has been dreaming of a wedding with a marryoke.
One of you will continue to argue about this until someone gives in, it happens often. This is where I say, remember what the day is about and don’t stress the small stuff!
Having your friends and family there, good food and booze to enjoy and a great celebration party, is really all you need to consider. Everything else, like themes, activities, games etc are added touches that make no “emotional” impact on your day!
Make sure you spend on the most important elements
If you can afford it, have it! If you want it and can’t afford it, wait to see if you have the budget after all the important elements have been considered.
Most importantly don’t choose a date that is going to put you under financial pressure. Don’t start married life in debt! Better to give yourself 2 years to plan and save, than 1 year, miss things you really want, whilst putting you both under pressure!
Make sure you concentrate your budget on the things that mean the most as you can always DIY the elements that maybe matter less.
What are the most important elements to you?
It may be that you want a small wedding or a venue that will hold ALL of your friends and family and that is key, or that you are both massive foodies, so excellent top notch catering is really important, or you like a good party, so a Band and DJ is key.
Sit down together and list what is important to you both in order and then concentrate your budget from the top down.
Don’t let those all important elements suffer because the non-important items like a photo booth or candy cart is taking some of that budget away.
There’s plenty of cost effective ways of making your own photo booth up with some props, an empty frame a camera, and a good old ~hashtag or WedPics!
You will offend at least one person during your planning.
One of your mates consider you a bestie, and are hoping to be selected to be part or your bridal party OR you only have a limited amount of space for day guests and have to cut people from the list or end up with an evening invite only.
Maybe you have an extended family or parents are separated with new partners and who is going to go on the top table or you don’t want your sibling to go because of a personal reason.
Just remember, whatever anyone says, it’s your wedding day. It is the one day in your entire life where this one day is about YOU and YOUR partner. Don’t even try to please everyone because you won’t!
So this leads nicely on to the fact that you will never please everyone
The more that you understand that you can't please 100% of the people 100% of the time, the more you will enjoy your wedding planning.
There will be plenty of people trying to get involved in your planning, not to mention give you free advice, but it’s worth discussing with your partner very early on if you are going to plan with your family, or get friends involved, or try and keep control yourselves or you may opt for a wedding planner if you are restricted on time.
One thing to learn is to organise yourselves well and tackle one supplier at a time in order of importance and you’ll be good to plan your own wedding all day long.
Make sure you find the right suppliers for your wedding day
So your friend got married and said that their love sign looked great, or their caterers were amazing, or their photographer was the best and their photos were beautiful, which is great.
Your needs and style WILL be different and they may not suit your style of wedding. So whilst recommendations go some way, remember to continue to find what suits you and your day the best.
Skip the Rituals That Don't Really Matter to You
Don’t feel under press to follow tradition. If you don’t want to throw the bouquet for the next bride-to-be to catch when in reality you want to keep it, then don’t build it in your timeline.
Every wedding I manage is different and nowadays tradition is thrown out of the window to opt for a more unique day that suits the happy couple.
Plan for contingencies in your budget
No matter how much you plan, something will deviate from the plan on that day so have some extra budget available for any last minute changes.
You may need at last minute dress alternation you hadn't factored in, or your DJ has said to set up earlier is going to cost more. Just have a contingency fund ready for any unexpected costs.
Have a raining back up plan
If you are saying your vows outdoors, make sure there's an equivalent place indoors. If you have welcome drinks outdoors, again make sure what the alternative is.
If you can't have your photos, how can you move around your timeline to have them later when the rain may have stopped, or is there an inside area to have pictures.
Make sure you have seen to everyone’s dietary requirements to prevent any nasty reactions. There are so may dietary needs nowadays, something will go awry if you haven't considered them all.
No one likes asking for help, but if there's one time you can use more help, it is during the planning if you are finding it overwhelming on a daily basis, don’t make life stressful if you don’t need it to be.
If you have friends and family you can really trust and they are happy to help, you can find things on your checklist that you can delegate to, take the stress away where you can.
Make sure your planning is a fun experience.
Firstly don’t expect your spouse-to-be AS excited as you. Quite often, one is more in to it than the other and they don’t always want to pitch in, however having an open discussion right from the start to ask them what type of wedding they want will go a long way to getting them more involved if they feel they have a say. Remember its their day too.
Don’t lose sleep!
Seriously, take care of yourself and try not to stress. Your wedding day is going to be amazing, no matter how ever much you planned.
Whatever is causing your sleepless nights in the months ahead of your wedding day, there will be an answer, and that may be hiring a wedding day coordinator to take away every bit of stress for you on the day and the run up to your wedding day and also just remember why you are getting married.
Trust the experts
If you are stuck for ideas or unsure whether something will work or not then ask the professionals around you, they'll reassure you one way or another and may even make great suggestions that you hadn't thought of yet.
Just remember, if you have a dry hire and taken on lots of suppliers and you don’t want the hassle of managing your wedding day yourself, you can always give me a shout.
Not only does hiring a wedding day coordinator save you time and effort, it also keeps your wedding day running perfectly all day and completely stress free. Something that you definitely cannot put a price on!
I am a multi award winning wedding planner with over 50 weddings under my belt and always ready to help you on your special day. Whether you need just an extra pair of hands, or a full day management, I can ensure you have that perfect wedding day.
Finally if you feel that your wedding is spiralling out of control financially, don’t be scared to re-evaluate and remind yourself what your day is about and take a small step back on some of the unnecessary extras that you really may not need!
I hope you found the above advice useful and I wish you both the most enjoyable time planning your wedding. Any advice you need along the way, my gateway is always open
If your next step is to find your venue, but we are still in lockdown, then here's a blog we wrote how you can still find that perfect venue from the luxury of your own home https://www.busybrides.co.uk/post-oszsu/how-to-find-your-perfect-wedding-venue-in-lock-down
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